Project Details

Project Name:
Kawailoa Wind 
D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments (previsouly SunEdison, First Wind Solar Group)
Kawailoa / Haleiwa
69 MW
Tax Map Key:
PUC Docket:
Project Status:
In operation since November 2012, the Kawailoa Wind Farm originally built by First Wind and currently owned by D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments, LLC, is located on former sugarcane land within the Kawailoa Plantation owned by Kamehameha Schools northeast of Haleiwa Town on Oahu's north shore. The 69 megawatt (MW) wind farm is comprised of thirty (30) 2.3 MW Siemens turbines and is compatible with agricultural operations in the surrounding area, such as livestock. Power from Kawailoa Wind is sold to the Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) at $0.2190/kilowatt-hour (average fiscal year 2018 price) or $0.229/kWh under a 25-year power purchase agreement through November 2032 approved by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission in December 2011. In 2018, Oahu's two existing wind farms - Kawailoa Wind and the Kahuku Wind Farm - generated approximately 3.1% of Oahu's energy needs and comprised 14% of Oahu's renewable energy portfolio (total renewable energy generation) that year. In April 2019, the US Fish and Wildlife Service initiated a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) review in response to applications from four Hawaii wind farms -- Auwahi Wind Farm (Maui), Kaheawa Wind Power II (Maui), Pakini Nui Wind Farm (Hawaii), and Kawailoa Wind Power (Oahu) -- to amend their Incidental Take Permits authorizing the take of three endangered species found only in Hawaii: the opeapea (Hawaiian hoary bat), nene (Hawaiian goose), and uau (Hawaiian petrel). The PEIS provides a comprehensive analysis of cumulative impacts across all four projects. To mitigate harm to these species, Kawailoa Wind has invested substantively in hoary bat research, partnered with government to purchase and protect bat habitat in the Helemano Wilderness Area in Central Oahu, adjusted wind farm operations to shut off turbines during higher bat activity, and explored new deterrent technologies including investment in a bat deterrent system. In August 2019, a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement to amend the Habitat Conservation Plan and Incidiental Take License for the project was filed with the State.